esxi 4 pnic configuration

I am setting up a vcenter 4.1 with virtual distributed switch.  I am wondering how to allocate my physical nics.  I have 4 hosts with 4 pnics each.  Can I use 2 for management and vm network traffic and then 2 for ISCSI and VMotion traffic.  Suggestions?
SteelyAsked:
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Deepak KosarajuDevOps EngineerCommented:
How many clusters are you planning to configure? All best practices are for to start the journey: you should be good with 3 NDVs across all 4 ESXi host
1st NDVs - Having 2 nic's Load Balanced for vmotion & Management network
2nd NDVs - Having 1 nic for ISCIS SAN Traffic.
3rd NDVs - Having 1 nic for VM Traffic(Prod).

As you go, you might have to shuffle your setting as per the performance with in the environment. I would start with above... It varies from person-to-person opinion on how we setup the environment, I always follow the best practices with respect to the considerations of my workload.
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Luciano PatrãoICT Senior Infraestructure  Engineer  Commented:
Hi

For only 4 VMs I don't think that you need to separate or NICs.

If you want you can use one NIC for vmkernel. For vMotion, but the rest I don't think that you need to change that.

Just create a vSwitch with 3 NICs and use that for VM Network and also for Service Console.

Enable the teaming and loadbalancing for all that NICs inside of that vSwitch.

Hope this can help you

Jail
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SteelyAuthor Commented:
I have 4 hosts not VM s .   I am using a SAN with Vcenter.  I am running esxi so there is no service console.  
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Luciano PatrãoICT Senior Infraestructure  Engineer  Commented:
Hi

Yes but 4 NICs for each host right? So the config is the same.

Regarding the SC, if you have ESXi, even better, just use one for vmkernel.

You are using SAN with FCs right? So dont need to use any NIC for that.

Jail
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SteelyAuthor Commented:
Actually ISCSI SAN so i do need to use nics.  I want to use 2 for this.  The question is, can I use the same 2 nics for vmotion?
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Deepak KosarajuDevOps EngineerCommented:
Its always recommended to use separate vmkernel portgroup from vmotion and iscsi traffic. so assign 2 nics separate for each,  but best practice is to have redundancy nics either configured to Load balance (or) failover if one nic fails u have another nice that takes care of it.
You can have 2 distribution switch 1 for vmotion and 1 for SAN ISCSI each having its own vmkernel portgroups. That's the best practice I heard in-order to isolate your traffics.
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Deepak KosarajuDevOps EngineerCommented:
In your scenarios as I am not aware of how many vm's you are planning to deploy, I recommend to go with 2 distribution switches each handling vmotion and storage traffic of all 4 hosts.
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SteelyAuthor Commented:
So in other words, use one dvs for vmotion and iscsi traffic.  Use another dvs for vm traffic and management traffic.  Give each dvs 2 nics with load balance and failover.
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Deepak KosarajuDevOps EngineerCommented:
I would combine management traffic with vmotion as I don't always do vmotion(provided if I don't have DRS,HA feature for my ESXi version) and looking at management traffic it shouldn't be much as we are not taking about service console here - all under 1 NDvs with 2 nic's for Load balancing. And out of 2 other nic's I can have dedicated nic for iSCSI connected to a separate NDVs and 1 dedicated nic for prod traffic assigned to another separate NDvs.

So I am talking about 3 NDvs managed for all 4 ESXi Hosts.
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Deepak KosarajuDevOps EngineerCommented:
Sorry my bad if u have NDvs feature you should probably using Ent Plus License of ESxi so you should have DRS and HA,FT all features that you can use so plan up accordingly.
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SteelyAuthor Commented:
Yes I have enterprise plus.  So do like your previous post suggested?
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SteelyAuthor Commented:
So I could upgrade some nics from dual to quad.  Then I could have 6 at minimum.
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Deepak KosarajuDevOps EngineerCommented:
That would be best so u can setup redundant nic's(stand-by fail-over) for each traffic, if you have option to do so and your operations team approves please go-ahead.
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SteelyAuthor Commented:
Very good info.  Good responses.
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Deepak KosarajuDevOps EngineerCommented:
Glad to help another Expert in EE.
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